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A New Measure of Herding Behavior: Derivation and Implications

Authors: Amina Amirat, Abdelfettah Bouri


If price and quantity are the fundamental building blocks of any theory of market interactions, the importance of trading volume in understanding the behavior of financial markets is clear. However, while many economic models of financial markets have been developed to explain the behavior of prices -predictability, variability, and information content- far less attention has been devoted to explaining the behavior of trading volume. In this article, we hope to expand our understanding of trading volume by developing a new measure of herding behavior based on a cross sectional dispersion of volumes betas. We apply our measure to the Toronto stock exchange using monthly data from January 2000 to December 2002. Our findings show that the herd phenomenon consists of three essential components: stationary herding, intentional herding and the feedback herding.

Keywords: trading volume, Herding behavior, market return

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